Rich has two Western Digital 2TB hard drives that have failed on him. Leo says that hard drives can fail, even in the very beginning. Larger hard drives can fail more often, but they are getting better. Western Digital replaced the failed drives and he's thinking of building a network attached storage (NAS). He's wondering if it would be easier to just buy one instead. Leo says that buying is easier and he likes Synology for that.
network attached storage
JR is looking to get an external hard drive, but he really doesn't want to get one that uses USB. Leo says he could add a Firewire card or an external SATA (eSATA). There's also Network Attached Storage (NAS). Leo likes Synology's DiskStation and NetGear's ReadyNAS. NAS gives him data redundancy too, which is a plus.
Chris has a D-link DNS 320 networked attached storage enclosure (NAS). Leo says that the NAS has built in software that should go out and get the backup. It's one of the greatest things about having a NAS. He doesn't need software on his computers for it. Then he can do cloud backup to Carbonite via the NAS. (Disclaimer: Carbonite is a sponsor).
Andrew would like a more efficient way to search his desktop and his NAS. Leo says that X1 is his current favorite. It indexes everything, populates after only a few letters, and will search more than just NAS. It's $50, and has a free trial. Another, free, option is Google Desktop Search.
Leo says that while a local, centralized backup solution via network attached storage (NAS) is a great idea, it shouldn't take the place of off site options. NAS is a good idea though and using something like Netgear's ReadyNAS or the Synology Diskstation is a good, solid option. He recommends getting one with three or more disks that supports RAID 5.
Tony works for a security firm and he wants to mirror the data of a hard drive onto a RAID. Leo says the first thing Tony should do is clone the drive since it's a very important drive to his job. Drive's will eventually die, so it's vital for Tony, or anyone for that matter, to clone the drive to back it up. Hard drives usually come with utilities for this purpose. EaseUS has a great imaging utility for that. Once that's done, save the original drive in a safe place and then use the cloned drive moving forward.
Robert's Buffalo Network Attached Storage device is randomly rebooting, and he wants to get the data from those drives backed up onto something else. He wants to take one of the drives out, back it up to another machine, and replace it.
Leo says that in a RAID 0 configuration, the two drives together make up what appears to be one drive, and they cannot be read independent from one another. If he has RAID set to Mirror each drive, then if he'd lose one drive, he'd still have his data. His best bet would be to get a second Buffalo NAS and duplicate the RAID.
Charlie is interested in getting a DROBO network attached storage and wants to know if the drives will last longer if he doesn't use them for writing and rewriting files. Leo says that isn't what causes a drive to wear out. They wear out due to spinning. So he really can't make a drive last longer. They spin all the time.